Gum disease

Gum disease

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Credit: SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY.

Caption: Close-up of the teeth & gums of a person reflecting a history of poor oral care: both upper & lower gums are inflamed (gingivitis - gum disease) & the upper teeth are in especially poor condition (2 upper incisor teeth have been crowned, ie a porcelain cap has been fitted over the remains of the real teeth). Gingivitis is caused by bacterial action on carbohydrates from food, which forms a plaque that accumulates on surface of teeth (where it also causes tooth decay) & on margins of the gums. It readily spreads to spaces between gum & tooth; the gums become swollen & inflamed & may bleed easily. If unchecked, it may lead to eventual loss of teeth.

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Keywords: condition, dental, dentistry, disorder, gingivitis, gum disease, healthcare, medical, medicine, odontology, oral, tooth decay

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